No sooner had Josh Wolkon broken the news that executive chef Matt Selby was moving on after fifteen years at Vesta Dipping Grill (and then Steuben's and Ace) that just where Selby is moving became clear:
Selby will join James Iacino and Scott Kinsey as a full partner at the Corner House, slated to open in late November in the Jefferson Park neighborhood. Selby will serve as both executive chef and general manager. "This is just such an incredible opportunity," Selby said in a statement. "I'm excited to be working with James and Scott. A smaller, more intimate concept is definitely something that I've always wanted to do, and it's a chance for me to really cook again."
"We are extremely honored and excited to partner with chef Selby and bring his unique talents to Jefferson Park," said Iacino in the same statement. "He's a Colorado boy, just like me, and his vision for the cuisine and love of hospitality fits right in with what we were already planning." Iacino and Kinsey both live in the RiverClay building, where the Corner House will be located.
Here's the note that Josh Wolkon had sent to the media shortly before the Corner House announcement arrived:
Chef Matt Selby is moving on. Initially hired as a young sous chef 15 years ago, Selby has grown with Vesta and will remain in Denver, involved in the flourishing chef community he helped create and nurture. Chef Brandon Foster, who has been serving as Executive Chef of Vesta for the past 5 years, will continue to run the kitchen at Vesta, while Chef Brandon Biederman will continue in his role of the past six years as Executive Chef of Steuben's and now Ace. Both plan to continue the community relations that have always been a core value of the company.
"Jen and I will be forever grateful for everything Chef Selby has helped us accomplish," said Wolkon, founder of Vesta, Steuben's and Ace. "We have grown up together, shared marriages, births, travels, and memorable food and restaurant related experiences. As a team, we have participated in countless community events."
"It's time for a new and different challenge," said Chef Selby. "It's been an incredible 15 year run and I am proud of everything Josh, Jen and I have accomplished. We have built three successful restaurants together, appeared on four Food Network shows, had multiple visits to the James Beard House and written a cookbook. We have travelled the world and done a ton of philanthropy work together. It is just time for me to take what I have learned and try something on my own. It's time to leave the nest."
"We have been blessed to have Matty with us for the past 15 years. In this business such a long run is a rarity," Wolkon continued. "Chef Selby's mark will forever be left on Vesta, Steuben's and Ace, but I am confident that Executive Chefs Foster and Biederman will continue to excel in their respective kitchens."
The loss of Chef Selby is tempered with the excitement of welcoming back former Steuben's General Manager and 12 year team member, Dave Zahradnik, to the Vesta, Steuben's and Ace family. David will rejoin the group in November at their newest venture, Ace Eat Serve.
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Wolkon will be talking to the staff of the three restaurants later this afternoon about other plans for the future.